After Dark In The Park
If you’re in or near Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park on a Tuesday, check the schedule to make sure you don’t miss one of the award-winning After Dark In The Park presentations at 7 pm in the Kīlauea Visitor Center auditorium.
Residents and park visitors since 1990 have been incredibly fortunate. The same unparalleled ecological and cultural resources that moved the community to establish the park in 1916, and that drove designation as both an International Biosphere Reserve (1980) and a World Heritage Site (1987), draws brilliant, passionate people from all over the world to study and reflect here. Researchers, teachers, artists, historians, cultural icons—the best of the best on the cutting edge of their respective fields, that’s the talent pool from which this program staff is able to draw.
After Dark In The Park (or ADIP) was born in 1990 during a brainstorming session between two part-time NPS women, and launched that July with help from HPPA. Presenters for the first half-year alone would cover volcano dynamics, petroglyphs, whales, tsunamis, the Hawaiian cultural aspect of the full moon, native forest birds, fire ecology, history in the Pacific, alien threats to native ecology, and insects. Whew. Not bad for a first HALF year.
In time, After Dark In The Park programs would become integral to the Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park full experience. The chance to hear from someone riding the very crest of a wave of new information in their field was, and remains, an irresistible draw. Hawaiian music, chant and hula are now interwoven with more academic offerings, balancing out the menu.
The rich palette of offerings has included presentations on our native bat, geese, and petrels, journeys into the storied history of the volcano region’s many communities, a look at the nearshore anchialine pools, a virtual trip out to the Papahānaumokuakea National Marine Monument, and several nights of song and live local music.
In short, never a dull moment.
See you next time? Of course we will.
(After Dark in the Park programs are usually presented twice a month, but some months vary with both more and fewer programs on offer.)